6 things movies get wrong about beer
Fargo beer bottles

We all know that the fiction of the silver screen rarely chimes with the down to earth realities of day to day life.

Obsessed lovers can’t just run through airport security, young professionals can’t afford lavish apartments, and people don’t just dust themselves off and walk away from a five-storey drop.

But still, you’d think that films could get something as simple as beer right. It’s just a lovely thing we like to drink. Surely that’s one aspect of daily life we could expect to be realistically captured?

Alas, Hollywood doesn’t really seem to get that either. From bad bar etiquette to bizarre misrepresentations, here are six simple things that the movies get wrong about beer.

1. You don’t just walk into a bar and ask for ‘beer’

Maybe it’s because using brand names is simply not done in movie-land (unless backed by advertising), but I can’t remember the last time I strolled into a pub in real-life, chucked my coat onto a stool, and simply barked at the barperson: “beer!”

Doing so would almost certainly be met with a blank stare, and blunt response of “what kind”? Everything seems to be much simpler in films, however, where simply telling your drinks-provider the basic type of booze you want will see them bring forth the desired foaming glass or bottle from the fridge, like some kind of magical ale psychic.

Bar scene The Lookout

2. Nobody drinks out of little red cups

In every Hollywood college or high school comedy, there’s a scene where the popular kid throws a kick-ass party – and everyone is standing around supping their beers out of bright red plastic or paper cups.

I don’t know about you, but at every social gathering I attended back in my wild youth normal folk drank out of glasses, when they weren’t simply chugging straight from the source.

3. People don’t always sup the worst kind of beer

In the world of cinema, almost everyone seems to have a bottle of some kind of watered-down pish in their hands, rather than a proper pint.

Real ale, premium lager and a nice tasty stout simply don’t get a look in. You’d think all the flash businessmen, bright young things and cocky gangsters Hollywood depicts would have better taste.

Fargo beer bottles

4. A LOT of women drink the stuff

In any group of socialising friends these days, you’re likely to find your fair share of ale enthusiasts among drinkers of the female persuasion. Indeed, the recent craft beer explosion has seen more women than ever before preferring a pint over any other kind of tipple. Stereotypes be damned.

And yet, on screen ladies are still pretty much limited to downing cocktails or glasses of wine while their male counterparts get in the brewskies. Speaking personally, my own girlfriend drinks roughly ten times as much beer as me – yet I can’t remember the last time I saw an actress swigging it on screen.

Bridesmaids wine

5. No one’s fridge is that well-stocked

In pretty much every someone-opening-the-fridge shot in movies, the shelves are revealed to be generously packed with rows of stacked beer cans and bottles, whether a party was planned or not.

In reality, most of us have the odd stray tin going from that BBQ three months ago. In reality, ET would have had to root around a wee bit more before finding a can tucked away right at the back, behind some mouldy carrots and a 10 year old jar of mayo.

6. Throwing beer is not the standard method of distribution

In movies, lobbing cans and bottles at your friends’ heads is simply the normal way of making sure that everyone has a drink in their hands; as if every single person is a Begbie like maniac intent on cutting open people’s scalps.

In our experience, politely handing drinks out to people in a bar or social gathering generally works better, cutting down on spillage, broken glass, and emergency hospital trips.